Pict’Earth – UAV Aerial Photography Solutions

PictEarthUSA uses Google Earth Back at the beginning of the year, I wrote about a video someone posted showing a guy flying a remote controlled plane (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle or UAV) and used a digital camera to take aerial photos and show them in Google Earth. The guy who created it is David Riallant, and his company Pict’Earth is located in France. He has now expanded his operation and has a new office in the USA, which is being run by Jeffery Johnson and Stewart Long. They have a new web site called PictEarthUSA.com. The new company has a system available which uses a basic remote controlled plane, Pict’Earth software, and a Nokia N95 as both the camera system and wireless broadband communicator. They offer both live and professional aerial image processing services. Not ony that, but they have recruited the efforts of the well-known Google Earth innovator Valery Hrosunov in Perm, Russia to develop the software for the image processing and display in GE. Check out their gallery of example photos.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. Nice work on your UAV work and geo-scanning!
    Pretty impressive stuff! In case you need to zoom in further distances, a device like a C-MIGITS III INS/GPS may be handy on future UAV or LiDAR projects. The C-MIGITS III is very popular for LiDAR, remote sensing, Digital Mapping Cameras (DMCs). It allows the user to “photo stitch” the acquired imagery by knowing the position, heading, and camera angle when each photo was taken. It has 10 Hz update rates on the INS, and 100 Hz on the IMU. This allows very high-speed location data to occur during flight, and hence more accurate photo-stitching.
    For more info:

  2. Interesting. It looks like fun to fly. I am assuming that if a Nokia N95 is the camera platform, then there is some sort of timed actuation of the shutter. I wonder how difficult it would be to make a live-feed signal that would allow remote actuation to capture an image that the pilot could see in real time?

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